"Story of a Poem is the luminous, lyrical meditation on wringing beauty from suffering and air, threaded with a singular, moving story about parenting an atypical child. I read it in a single gulp, and you will too." --Mary Karr, Bestselling author of The Liars' Club and Cherry
The vinyl audiobook is currently available for preorder on limited edition opaque orange vinyl with an alternate vinyl audiobook cover design, including abridged narration by Matthew Zapruder with music by Matthew Zapruder and The Claudius Birdman Quartet, featuring Josh Haden, Butch Norton, Matt Chamberlain, Roberto Infante, Andrew Bush, Kevonkj, and Larry Kanarian.
Recorded by Andrew Bush at Grandma's Warehouse, Chatsworth, California, and Sound City, Van Nuys, California, November 2022.
Mixed by Andrew Bush and Roberto Infante
Mastered by Jeff Woolery
Matthew Zapruder had an idea: to write a poem as slowly and intentionally as possible, to preserve its drafts, and record the painstaking, elusively transcendent stuff of its construction. It would be the end cap to a new collection of poetry, and a means to process modern American life in a time of political turmoil, mega fires, and sobriety. What Zapruder didn't anticipate was that this literary project would reveal a deeply personal aspect as well: a way to resolve the unexplored pain and unexpected joys he was confronting in the wake of his son's diagnosis with autism.
The result is a remarkable piece of writing, one that explores not just what it means to be a poet and father, but also what it means to be alive on this planet during this turbulent and extraordinary time. By comparing the writing of a poem with his own tangled evolution as a son, husband and father, Zapruder unfolds moments of his own life in the reflection of an increasingly uncanny world. With a wide range of reference points-- from Celan, Li Bai and Frank O'Hara to Whitman, Merwin and Rupi Kaur--we join Zapruder on a poet's journey; that in some alchemy of literature, becomes a journey of our own.
Ultimately, the poet asks us to join with him in the search for a crucial answer. In his words: "What world can we imagine, and then make, where we all can live?" With Story of a Poem celebrated poet Matthew Zapruder offers a personal, deeply unguarded examination of a poet's eternal struggle to transform a moment of feeling into verse, as well as a subtle and enthralling roadmap to the practice of poetry and finding its threads in everyday life.